Asia

Hamas responds to Egypt, Qatar on Gaza ceasefire plan; source says group proposes new timeline


CAIRO – Mediators Egypt and Qatar received a response from Hamas and Palestinian groups to a US ceasefire plan for Gaza, the Egyptian and Qatari governments said on June 11 as an official briefed on the matter said Hamas proposed a new timeline.

The statement from Egypt and Qatar did not disclose what the response said, but the official, who declined to be identified, said Hamas proposed a new timeline for a permanent ceasefire with Israel and withdrawal of Israeli troops from Gaza, including Rafah.

Asked about the response, a Hamas official, who asked not to be named, said: “We reiterated our previous stance. I believe there no big gaps. The ball is now in the Israeli courtyard.”

Egyptian officials were not immediately available for further comment.

The Egyptian ministry said Doha and Cairo, along with the US, will continue their mediation efforts until a deal is reached, adding that they will study the response and coordinate the next steps with concerned parties.

The Egyptian statement came shortly after Hamas and the Palestinian Islamic Jihad released a statement in which they expressed “readiness to positively” reach a deal to end the war in Gaza and said they submitted their response to Qatari and Egyptian mediators.

The United Nations Security Council on June 10 backed a proposal outlined by US President Joe Biden for a ceasefire between Israel and Hamas in the Gaza Strip.

On June 7, US President Joe Biden laid out what he called a “three-phase” Israeli proposal for a ceasefire in Gaza which would include negotiations for a permanent ceasefire in the Palestinian enclave as well as an exchange of some Israeli hostages for Palestinian prisoners. REUTERS



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